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University of Cambridge and University of Kentucky Launch Research Collaboration

University of Cambridge and University of Kentucky have launched collaboration in applying RNA nanotechnologies to solve some of the world’s most pressing inflammatory neurological syndromes.

Cambridge Neuroscientist, Dr. Pluchino (pictured right) a neurologist and experimental neuroscientist, Dr. Stefano Pluchino, University Lecturer in Brain Repair, Dept Clinical Neurosciences, University of Cambridgeserves as Associate Professor in the Centre for Brain Repair. His major contribution has been the breakthrough demonstration of the immune modulatory functions of somatic neural stem cells.

Professor Peixuan Guo (pictured left), the William S. Farish Fund Endowed Chair in Nanobiotechnology at the UK College of Pharmacy and Markey Cancer Center, has established himself as one of the lead’s premier nanobiotechnology experts for his work in cancer therapeutics and RNA nanotechnology.


Their backgrounds come from different ends of the scientific spectrum, which Pluchino said was one of the major factors in the partnership. Pluchino said he is constantly searching for innovative  investigative approaches. It was after he read a review on the emerging field of RNA nanotechnology published by Guo in Nature Nanotechnology that he became interested in how he could apply Guo’s approach to cancer to his own vision of creating novel nanomedicines to test in experimental neuroscience. 

After extensive discussions and consultation, the two researchers have now signed a joint collaboration agreement between their two labs to utilize RNA nanotechnologies for brain repair in syndromes where persistent inflammation leads to irreversible neural damage, such as multiple sclerosis, cerebral stroke and spinal cord injury.


As part of the collaboration, a post-doctoral scholar supported by Pluchino’s Cambridge laboratory will spend six months in Guo’s lab. The postdoc will be learning how to apply Guo’s novel methods to neuroscience. Drs. Guo and Pluchino also will work jointly towards funding opportunities.

Posted on 09/03/2012

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